More ramblings and design decisions!

Maty et Ben -118

When I set up this website a few years ago I intended to add weekly blog entries at a minimum but judging by the current number of entries in my blog we can all see that I failed miserably at that task! I do however have some excuses but I will not use them this time…

Going forward, I will post a picture or video blog entry after each event. That will help me with the picture selection on my site because it’s very difficult to choose from the thousands of pictures I have on my 20+ hard drives. I believe the job will be easier if I select the best 5 to 10 pictures of each event. That will also keep the site more lively and up to date.

I refreshed all the pictures today as well and that is part of what led me to make these decisions.

I did 2 events this past weekend  (a prom and a surprise party) so stand by for the pictures!

New Year.. New Prices

As I have been telling you all, we slightly increased our prices for 2015. You will see that we are still moderately priced for the Atlanta market and provide excellent quality.

Stay tuned for additional services and features for this year.

Thank You!

As we get closer to the end of this year, I would like to thank everyone who used us for photography, videography or dj services this year.


We promise to do even better and bigger next year.


I just wanted to take this opportunity to wish everyone very happy holidays, a merry christmas, and also a happy new year!


See you next year!

Questions people ask me!

I’ve been wanting to make a video to explain what goes into working an event as a photographer, videographer or as a DJ. I’ve been thinking about that for years but instead of putting in a video as originally intended, I will write about it here. I will keep on updating the post as people ask me more questions.


1)   Your prices seem high… People tell me this at least once a month.

  1. We believe we provide some of the cheapest prices for comparable services and quality. We offer low to mid prices for high quality output and equipment. Excellent professionalism, on time, High-end equipment and backup. We typically have about 5 to 8 cameras available per event. We also have redundant speakers and additional controllers and media players. Equipment costs for a typical event is about $ 10 000. We use over $ 20 000 in equipment when doing photo, video and DJ services for a single event.
  2. There is a lot of processing required after the event. We actually work a lot more after the event than we do during the event. An average event generates about 1000 pictures and 6 to 10 hours of video. Every one of these pictures is looked at and analyzed. About 50% of the pictures are provided to customer. Every single picture is color corrected and cropped appropriately. It takes about 20 hours to go through this process. That seems like a lot but it’s nothing compared to processing video. A typical video requires a full week (40 hours) of work. You can imagine what the hourly rate could be when you add the time spent at the event for 1 or 2 photographers and the prosy-processing time. After adding equipment depreciation, gas, car depreciation, insurance and taxes that is very close to minimum wage and sometimes even much less than minimum wage.
  3. Please check around… Some of the speakers we use (Bose L1 and B2) cost $ 150 each to rent in Atlanta and you have to pick them up and return them the next business day. Rental companies require a deposit or a credit card hold of $ 2000 per speaker.  Our Dj Services (which includes these speakers) start at $ 450. That is actually cheaper than it costs to rent 2 Bose L1 + B2 sets so not sure how much cheaper we could be. Our minimum DJ price in 2015 will be $500 so please book your events in advance to have the 2001 (that is not a typo) pricing.


2)   Can 1 person shoot photo and videos at the same time?

  1. Yes!
  2. An event is broken into different sections… speeches, dinner, dancing, cake cutting and so on. We can take full pictures of everything needed and have complete video coverage of what is needed. There is no need to take a long video of people eating or dancing. During those times, pictures can be taken. Only one or two quick pictures are needed when someone is making a speech so we use the rest of the time for video. Those are some examples but we can do that for the entire event without missing a beat. For events with more than 100 people, we recommend having 2 people. Smaller events are fine with a single person. Some small weddings also may require 2 people if the church is picky about video and photography.


3)   Can you explain the options and why are they not included?

  1. We’ll start with why they are not included. Not everybody needs them and they require some additional setup or equipment. Setting up the lights takes longer than setting up our Bose L1 speakers…
  2. Portrait Stand and additional lighting: We set up an additional camera with some portable lights and wireless receivers. The lighting is perfect for high-end or red carpet events. This requires 2 photographers unless that will be the only kind of pictures taken. Pictures have to be on the same spot as the lights are fixed.
  3. Bluray disks: Most of the time, when customers receive their video on DVD, they are underwhelmed with the quality of the video. Our videos are of high quality but DVD is standard definition video so it will not look as good as the video you see on High Definition (HD) TV everyday. The only way to have the video in HD is to have the video on a Bluray disk or an external hard drive. We now also offer the 15 minutes highlight reel on YouTube and that is in HD. Note that we’ve been capturing video in High Definition since the first HD cameras appeared. We were also among the first in Atlanta to offer 3D video! Please inquire about having your previous events released on Bluray or on YouTube. The $100 pricing only applies to current events. Pricing for past events will be higher because the video will need some additional editing.
  4. 15 minutes highlight reel on YouTube: We select the best 15 minutes of the video and upload it to YouTube to share your event with the world. $150 is a cheap way to increase your reach and make more people aware of your efforts. We highly recommend adding this option to your video projects.
  5. $ 100 for lights: This includes at least 8 DMX controlled LED lights configured to match your event. We can do up lighting (i.e. One or more colors on the walls or columns), Flashing lights synchronized to music, or a combination of both. It all depends on the room and the event. We also have additional LED effect lights and lasers. We’re basically just charging for the additional time to set them up.
  6. Please let us know if you have any more questions.

Acer Aspire Switch 10

I purchased the Acer Aspire Switch 10 to play around with Windows 8.1. I am usually a Mac / iPad / iPhone guy but when I walked into a Best Buy store and I found the original Microsoft Surface 32 GB for $ 249 and I could not resist.

I played with the Surface and Windows RT for a few days and I did not find enough quality multimedia apps for my needs.

I returned it to best buy and purchased the Asus Transformer 100T running full Windows 8.1. The Transformer 100T also came with a keyboard that could be removed to use it in tablet mode just like an iPad.

I tried to like it  but eventually returned it as well for the following reasons:

1) MicroSD card kept on coming off as it was not mounted flush along the edge of the tablet.

2) Ports and connectors felt really cheap with gaps.

These 2 issues may not be a problem for most people but when you are used to the construction of Apple gadgets this is simply not acceptable. The transformer 100T felt like a pre-production model.

I eventually returned it as well and paid a few more dollars (50 to be exact) for the Acer Aspire Switch 10 that is the subject of this review.

The Switch 10 is a 2-1 laptop / tablet that comes with 4 modes per Acer: (Pictures will be added later).

1) Notebook Mode


2) Pad (Tablet) Mode


3) Display Mode


4) Tent Mode


Compared to the ASUS 100T I returned, the Switch 10 appears to have better quality silver plastics reminiscent of a my Macbook Air. The MicroSD card goes all the way in and has no chance of accidentally coming off which was a major concern for me.

The switch was not all positive as you win some and lose some as well so I lost the following:

1) Micro USB connector for the charger allowing me to use any of the chargers at home, in my car or at the office.

2) 10 to 11 Hours battery life.

Other than the items mentioned above, both of these hybrids are pretty well matched up. They come with Windows 8.1, a Quad-Core processor, Microsoft Office 2013 Home & Student Edition, 32 GB of Internal storage. I added a 64 GB MicroSD card for all my music.


In use,  the Acer Switch 10 mostly works fine. Some desktop applications respond a bit strange when used in tablet mode without the keyboard. I will come back to this point in more details in a future review. I suspect this is normal as these applications were designed for keyboard and mouse operation.  Some of the software manufacturers need to pay attention to this and make the necessary changes to fix that.

One software company that read my mind was Atomix Productions, makers of Virtual DJ software. Virtual DJ 8 has a Tablet mode that could come handy when playing around in tablet mode without the keyboard. The interface is not fully optimized but it’s a very good start.

Since this will be used mostly as the second backup option for my main DJ Rig, I installed Virtual DJ 8 (Free Version) and Serato DJ Intro along with a Pioneer DDJ-WeeGo controller.

I played my usual 5 hours set with no problems using Serato Dj Intro. I played around with Virtual DJ as well but not for an extended amount of time. I will write about that experience when I do. I just checked the Virtual Dj Tablet mode to see what it was all about and I liked it. For the time being, I still prefer Traktor on the iPad if I need to use just a tablet.


I will update this review as I think about and discover items to add but do not hesitate to contact me for any questions or for more info.




Update (June 23, 2014)

After using the Acer Aspire Switch 10 for a few more days, I would not recommend it to anyone for serious use. Here are some of the problems I encountered:

Power button unresponsive.

Battery drain when not in use (talking about hours here and not days)

Battery drain while plugged in.. (or not charging at all).

There is a single light on this hybrid and that’s on the power switch. It’s blue when fully charged, orange when charging or off.

There are no caps lock or any other indicators on the keyboard.

Very disappointed but I am tired of returning stuff to Best Buy so will keep it to play around.

Note that all firmware and Windows updates have been done and that did not have any effect on these problems.